How To Waterproof Your Electric Bike

How To Waterproof Your Electric Bike

You’re riding on your e-bike when it starts to rain.

Yikes! Since e-bikes are electric and make use of batteries, you might panic that your bike is going to go bust or break down, but the good news is that that’s unlikely to happen.

Are electric bikes waterproof?

E-bikes are considered to be resistant to water. This is because the bike’s drivetrain won’t be damaged by splashes of water and the battery can survive a bit of water exposure.

But there’s a catch – you definitely don’t want to let your bike get soaked as this can be damaging to its delicate parts.

You should also get into the habit of cleaning your e-bike after it’s been in rainy weather.

So, with that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the question of how much water an e-bike can withstand, and why. 

What To Avoid When Riding In The Rain

Riding E Bike On The Rain

While a light drizzle is something your e-bike can handle, you want to avoid potential damage from riding through deep water, such as puddles or streams.

You should also avoid any muddy conditions as you don’t want dirt to get into the bike’s components where it can cause them damage.

You wouldn’t get your smartphone muddy or soaked with water, would you?

Treat your e-bike in the same way! While it’s relatively strong, that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have delicate (and expensive) parts, such as its battery.

Check Your E-Bike’s IP Rating

One of the most important things you need to know about your e-bike is its IP rating.

IP stands for “International Protection Code” and it basically is used to classify how much protection a product has against water and other elements, such as dust or contact with the electric parts.

IP ratings have two digits. The first number refers to how much protection the product has against solid objects, such as dust.

The second number refers to how much protection the product has against water, with 0 meaning it isn’t protected and 8 meaning that it’s protected against continuous immersion in water.

You’ll find that many e-bikes will have a number 4 rating, meaning they can withstand splashes of water, but nothing too hectic.

The IP rating of your bike can be found on the bike packaging. If the bike you want to purchase doesn’t have an IP rating, don’t buy it!

This rating is a good sign that you’re purchasing a quality product.  

What To Know About E-Bike Batteries

Holding E Bike Battery

E-bike batteries aren’t waterproof, but they can be fine with water being splashed on them.

However, you have to ensure that you keep the battery healthy – it is, after all, the most expensive part of your e-bike and without it, you’re not going to be able to make use of your bike.

Here are some important tips to follow:

  • Invest in fenders. This will help to prevent water from splashing onto your e-bike’s battery and other components.
  • Always wipe your e-bike after you’ve gone for a ride in light rain.
  • Always store your e-bike in a bike bag and put it in a dry place.
  • Carry a waterproof bag if you need to carry batteries with you.
  • When you have to clean your e-bike, make sure you avoid pressure washing it. You should clean it gently with a rag and soapy water.
  • Never submerge your bike in water!

How To Ride Your E-Bike In The Rain

If it’s raining heavily outside and your bike is at risk of suffering more than just a few splashes of water, don’t take your bike out!

If you think the rain’s not too bad and your bike won’t get badly wet, make sure you follow these tips:

  • Make sure the electrical components of the bike are in a sealed case to protect them. You can buy a waterproof cover for the battery at specialized e-bike stores. If you find yourself out on the road and the weather has taken a turn, you can use a large plastic bag to give you temporary protection, so it’s always good to carry one in your backpack just in case.
  • Check that everything’s sealed nicely. Before you take your bike out in a fine drizzle, make sure that you give it a quick check to ensure that there are no areas where water can enter. Basically, you want to check the connections of the battery so that they’re sealed, as well as any cables and the screen.
  • Protect your motor and battery with a bit of silicone. If these e-bike components aren’t sealed onto the bike’s frame, you can help to bolster their water resistance by applying silicone to areas where the wires enter the bike’s motor. This will create a bit more of a barrier against water. While you’re at it, you can also put a bit of silicone on the battery and controller component seams as well as cover all screw heads.

Can You Ride An E-Bike During The Winter?

Riding E Bike On Snow

It’s not just water of which you should be wary when it comes to maintaining your e-bike.

You should also ensure that you don’t expose your bike’s electrical components to extreme cold conditions.

But how cold is too cold? Can you ride your e-bike in freezing temperatures?

Here’s the rule to follow: you can safely ride your e-bike when temperatures are below freezing, as this will not damage its battery.

However, the battery’s power will be decreased when it’s cold, in a similar way to how your car’s battery might struggle a bit on extremely cold mornings.

This isn’t anything to worry about, but you can prevent a decrease in power by making sure you store the battery indoors when you’re not using your e-bike so that it stays warm.

Other Important Tips For Riding Your E-Bike During Winter

How you ride your e-bike can help to keep it safe and in good nick during the icy months. Here are some tips.

  • Make sure you fit studded tires on your bike for winter riding. These are equipped to handle more extreme conditions, such as ice on the road. 
  • Don’t ride through slush. It might look tempting, but avoid it. Slush is watery and salty snow that can penetrate into your bike’s components and cause them to rust.
  • Never charge your e-bike’s battery when it’s freezing. If your battery is really cold, you don’t want to charge it as this will reduce its quality over time. You should slowly warm up the battery, like putting it in a warm place in the house, before trying to charge it.

How To Store Your E-Bike For The Winter Months

E Bike On Stand

If you’re not going to be using your e-bike in winter, then you need to make sure you store it properly so that it will be raring to go when spring arrives.

Clean the bike with a rag and soapy water thoroughly to remove dust and dirt before you store it away.

You should keep your battery partially charged. A good idea is to keep it at around 70-percent charge.

This is because your e-bike’s battery will have greater longevity when not stored for a long period of time fully charged.

Add lubricant to the metal parts and chain to prevent rust. Finally, always keep your e-bike in a dry and warm place.

Related Questions

What should you do if your bike falls into the water?

Immediately get the bike out and turn off its power. Dry the bike thoroughly. You should also remove the battery and controller cover so you can dry those off properly too.

What accessories can help to keep your e-bike safe from water?

Invest in a waterproof e-bike cover that will protect your bike when it’s not in use.

You should also consider buying fenders that will help to direct water away from your e-bike’s electric components and battery.

Conclusion

If you ride your e-bike regularly, you can’t always prevent it from a bit of rain.

After all, you never know when a sudden storm will occur during your ride – it’s not always possible to turn around and quickly head back home.

In this article, we’ve looked at how water-resistant e-bikes are so that now you know that while they can handle a few splashes of water they should never be exposed to rain on a regular basis.

While you might think that e-bikes are waterproof, it’s clear to see that a better term for them is water-resistant, and how you treat your e-bike should be in line with that to keep it free of damage and increase its longevity.

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